The exhibition focuses on sculptural art between the end of World War II and the present. The grand special exhibition on occasion of the inauguration of the enlarged Kunstmuseum Basel will map the medium’s extraordinarily dynamic evolution: the classical idea and form of sculpture grows more flexible and abstract as some artists integrate the trivial stuff of everyday life into their art or blur its spatial and conceptual boundaries, even as others return to the figurative tradition in an effort to set the genre on a new solid foundation. Selected works from the collections of the Kunstmuseum Basel and eminent pieces on loan from international museums and private collections will be brought together for a dense and exceptionally rich dialogue of positions in sculpture.
The exhibition opens with late works by Constantin Brancusi and Alberto Giacometti, two defining artists of the twentieth century. It continues with a loosely chronological arrangement highlighting various thematic emphases in sculpture between the 1940s and the 1970s, with exemplary works by Alexander Calder, Hans Arp, Max Bill, Henry Moore, Louise Bourgeois, Pablo Picasso, Eduardo Chillida, David Smith, Jean Tinguely, Claes Oldenburg, Duane Hanson, John Chamberlain, Donald Judd, Carl Andre, Joseph Beuys, Mario Merz, Bruce Nauman, Eva Hesse, Richard Serra, Robert Smithson, and others. The sequence then moves to sculptural works from the 1980s by Peter Fischli and David Weiss, Robert Gober, Charles Ray, Mike Kelley, Jeff Koons, Katharina Fritsch, Franz West, and others and concludes in the Museum für Gegenwartskunst with a survey of significant positions between the 1990s and the present, featuring sculptures by artists such as Gabriel Orozco, Matthew Barney, Absalon, Damien Hirst, Danh Vo, Monika Sosnowska, and Oscar Tuazon.